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Self-sacrificial acts

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konerko14
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What are the most common self-sacrificial acts people commit nowadays?

Here are just a few off the top of my head:

* Forgoing a career that one finds exciting, because one's parents would prefer that one do something different.

* Getting married (or having children) out of a sense of obligation or "duty".

* Faking agreement with others so as not to engender their opposition or disapproval.

* Allowing oneself to be pressured into supporting (monetarily or otherwise) a person, organization or cause.

* Feeling guilty for wanting success; the sense that one doesn't deserve to be happy.

* Subordinating oneself to, and/or blindly agreeing with, the opinions, beliefs, prejudices or traditions of others. (Accepting ideas on "faith" without evidence.)

There are countless other examples of self-sacrifice which people perform every day, far too many to try to list here. I think an awful lot of fad following or herd mentality is a kind of self-sacrifice; it amounts to placing the desires of a group above one's own rational judgment.

Mind you, a great deal of self-sacrifice is the result of deeply entrenched psychological premises. It's not enough merely to tell somebody: "Don't do that." A person has to understand why sacrifice is wrong, what makes it so evil, and why it can only ever lead to calamitous consequences in human life. Until then, the principle of self-sacrifice may well be guiding many of a person's choices and actions, often in ways he's not even consciously aware of.

Edited by Kevin Delaney
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I was left with 2 kids to raise when my husband left the state with his secretary. I had been his secretary but we had been married long enough for me not to understand the new office machines so I could head back to work. The house was sold and we were out in the cold. I borrowed money from my grandmother's estate and bought an old cabin in the mountains where I began to sew for people. I learned designing of clothes and soon went to work for a live theater where I designed and made the costumes for the Shakespeare productions. I loved doing it.

I had to find work that would furnish insurance so I went to work in a temporary secretarial service and hated it! I combined these two jobs and found a wonderful couple of gay men who were home during the day and they filled in when the kids came home from school. I did this for enough years to get the kids through private schools and into Berkeley. This was a sacrifice for me but the kids were so eager to go along with this plan that I simply went along with joy, watching them work part time and keep their grades up and make it into the best Universities. I have to admit that I was exhausted by working full time as a secretary and evenings and weekends as a costumer. It didn't hurt me at all.

The best tool I had during these years was what I learned from Ayn Rand. I saw first hand that anything done for love and pride is never a sacrifice. The Virtue of Selfishness guided me for many years. I was pleased that the kids also read the Rand books and essays and I believe this guided them all these years.

Those kids are now 43 and 50 with professions and families of their own. Rand's philosophy is the most valuable gift I ever received.

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This was a sacrifice for me but the kids were so eager to go along with this plan that I simply went along with joy, watching them work part time and keep their grades up and make it into the best Universities. I have to admit that I was exhausted by working full time as a secretary and evenings and weekends as a costumer. It didn't hurt me at all.

That doesn't sound like a sacrifice. It sounds like you chose the greater value.

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I was left with 2 kids to raise ... ...

Those kids are now 43 and 50 with professions and families of their own. Rand's philosophy is the most valuable gift I ever received.

Thanks for that story, Sandy. It sounds like you handled this like a champ. Congratulations.
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How can value ever come out of a white lie? I've never understood how that works, so I've never told them...

The value comes in not answering questions truthfully when telling the truth would lead to a greater wrong than telling a lie. This often comes up when one is asked a question which is rude or improper to ask, but an answer is demanded anyway.

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The value comes in not answering questions truthfully when telling the truth would lead to a greater wrong than telling a lie. This often comes up when one is asked a question which is rude or improper to ask, but an answer is demanded anyway.

Can you give an example? Couldn't you just say "I will not answer"?

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A good example I can think of is in social situations where you are asked to attend and you don't want to for some personal reason you would rather not tell the host. In such situations you might say "I have a prior engagement, and can't attend" even though the truth is "I could attend but I don't want to because I hate your friends."

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If your friend is a reasonable person, he will understand that not everyone has the same taste in friends, if he isn't why do you care what he thinks of you? Also, couldn't you just say "I'd rather not come."? It seems like you are trying to let your friend get away with faking reality, for by saying "I have a prior engagement" you allow him to believe that you would have gone otherwise, which allows him to believe that you like him, his friends, and his parties enough to want to spend your time there, even though this obviously isn't the case.

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Can you give an example? Couldn't you just say "I will not answer"?

If a kidnapper is asking where your child is sleeping "I will not answer" can be far worse than an outright lie. In this example, lying to the kidnapper is an instance of honesty, whereby you refuse to recognize unreality, i.e. his non-existent right to kindap your child.

A less extreme example where lying is better than saying nothing would be in the case of someone who wanted personal information from you that he has no right to have. For example, if someone asks you "Are you sleeping with X?" If you say "I will not answer" in many cases you've pretty much given away the answer as "yes." It is appropriate to lie and say "no" in this instance. The same principle applies mutatis mutandis as applies in the first example.

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If your friend is a reasonable person, he will understand that not everyone has the same taste in friends, if he isn't why do you care what he thinks of you? Also, couldn't you just say "I'd rather not come."? It seems like you are trying to let your friend get away with faking reality, for by saying "I have a prior engagement" you allow him to believe that you would have gone otherwise, which allows him to believe that you like him, his friends, and his parties enough to want to spend your time there, even though this obviously isn't the case.

:dough:B)

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Huh, another thread with comments about lying!

A white lie is not moral because it is damaging to every party involved. In the example of an inappropriate sexual history question, what does it matter that the other person takes a response like, "That question is inappropriate and I am choosing not to respond" as, "Yep, I'm guilty!" instead? That kind of person doesn't value you or what you say, and any damage he could bring to your reputation will be supported only by other people like himself.

The only instance where a lie, white or not, could be beneficial to one party is in an emergency situation, where the urgency is that of a knife at the throat. Every other time, no value is exchanged because the presented premises are false. Don't want to be around someone? "I would prefer not" is perfectly acceptable. Any reasonable person will take a comment like that at face value and that will be the end of it. A white lie in effect sanctions a quality judged to be bad in another person.

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Don't know if anyone mentioned these, but here are the most common ones I encounter:

"Never date an ex of a good friend of yours"

"Never insult someone to their face"/ "Be hypocritically nice" (integrity and honesty sacrificed) <-- most people claim that it is not a sacrifice since it gives them better chances of success (more people to be able to call and ask for a favor etc')

And probably the biggest sacrifice of all: second handishness: people who sacrifice their own self and passions to be popular/ admired / approved by others.

Can't think of more now, but there must be more.

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Didn't the President recently tell a white lie when he was asked, about 10 days before the mid-term elections, if Donald Rumsfeld would remain the Secretary of War for the remainer of his term and then he fired him immediately after the Republican's lost?

He was confronted with this and he said that he fibbed because he didn't want to drop a bombshell right before the election. Even if done with good intentions, lying about the personnel responsible for the most powerful military on the face of the Earth casts a pretty dark shadow.

At least we know now that Bush's sympathies lie more with his party than with the American people.

- Grant

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Cogito and Valdimir Berkov:

Between posts number 12 and 15, you two were talking about "White Lies". I discovered a great way to get out of numerous cases where "white lies" are usually told:

Question: "Would you like to go out/ go to a party/ attend a social gathering with me?"

Answer: "I'm sorry, I have more important things to do". (True: Because people engage in activities that increases their value. If a party doesn't bring that individual a value, then there are other things of more importance, or more value, that this individual wishes to do).

Question: "Does this pair of pants make me look fat?"

Answer: Varies. If this person is a stranger or coworker, ignore the question, and talk about something else. If this happens to be of someone of value, start asking them questions to identify what made them say this.

Question: "Don't you agree that [outlandish political idea sprouted here]?" (Done by a boss or co-worker).

Answer: To prevent "waves" from being formed in the organization, say "I completely disagree with your position and the question that you asked, however, I think it would be best if we should agree to disagree on this subject". If a discussion does start out, it might create bad feelings within the organization, which would serve no purpose.

Does anyone else have any other common "White Lies Questions" that are commonly asked?

Edit: I also realized that most of the common answers to those questions above are also how most people engage in Sacrifice.

Edited by Time_Maker
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Konerko14: You asked, in post 1, "What are the most common self-sacrificial acts people commit nowadays?"

My first question is "common - for who's culture and society?". I had the benefit of living in both the UK and California. In each of those places, the culture, and the way the people think, are different from one another. Not majority, but there is a difference, therefore, what is commonly sacrificed in one area is not the same as another area.

The next question that I have is "Why is this of value to you?" If, in each location, what is sacrificed is different then in another, to answer your question, "everything is the most common self-sacrifical acts".

I have a suspicion (just a suspicion, not a fact, or any evidence to back this up besides a gut feeling) that this is just some type of a test. What value does it bring to me to tell you what type of self-sacrifical acts people commit? By me answering this question, wouldn't I be engaging in self-sacrfice, because there wouldn't be any exchange of values?

Inquiring minds want to know ... :)

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I have a suspicion (just a suspicion, not a fact, or any evidence to back this up besides a gut feeling) that this is just some type of a test. What value does it bring to me to tell you what type of self-sacrifical acts people commit? By me answering this question, wouldn't I be engaging in self-sacrfice, because there wouldn't be any exchange of values?

Inquiring minds want to know ... :)

Man. That's a helluva lot of psychoanalysis for a simple question.

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